Beyond the Cusp

July 8, 2019

Is a War Coming in Israel?

Filed under: Israel — qwertster @ 1:54 AM
Tags: , , , , , , , ,

 

I have people asking me this question almost everywhere I go and in every group with which I associate. Apparently, I am considered a bit of an authoritative source even to those around me, quite complimentary. The simple and easiest answer is to simply say, “Yes.” Then they ask, How soon? That is where I get to say that I have no idea, but eventually something will go wrong. Then we get into the nitty-gritty and so will we as this article attempts to give a better answer that is more accurate and backed by facts and reality as seen from here in Israel. Such a discussion inevitably ends up being based heavily upon Iran and secondarily Hamas and the Muslim Brotherhood.

 

Hamas is the easier part of the equation, and that even includes their partners in Gaza, Islamic Jihad. These two terror outfits play a version of good cop-bad cop, which we like to call bad cop-worse cop. The game goes something like this on a quiet day. First, a quick definition of a quiet day which consists of any day with one or less rockets and under a dozen new fires in the south. The world media also have a definition of a day where nothing happened in Israel. Their definition is very simple, if Israel did not respond with any ground engagement or aerial strike which can be described as way over the top and thus disproportional to whatever the provocation may have been committed against Israel. So, under the rules of the world media, there has probably been virtually no mention of anything untoward going on in Israel. According to their reporting, there has not been a single terrorist strike including the incendiary kites and balloons. According to their no rockets means that neither Hamas nor Islamic Jihad have launched any form of attacks on Israel. There were twenty new fires started on Friday and less that twelve hours after the new agreement for quiet along the border went into effect. Hamas claims that they are unable to prevent the rioters along the border as it has simply grown beyond their ability to prevent at least on some level. Hamas points their fingers at Islamic Jihad which is already pointing back at Hamas. This leads the world media to conclude that neither terror group attacked and all the rioting is simply grassroots demonstrations where there are no incentives such as the three-hundred dollars paid to anyone rioting and launching attacks upon Israel, at least according to the world media. This can lead to the world media referring to any Israel response to the rioting along the border as an unprovoked attack as there has been no recognized attack upon Israel, there has simply been some small amount of mischief and nothing for the Israelis to get upset over. Sorry, but we find anything over a dozen new wildfires set by these incendiary balloons, kites and now drones dropping these packages even further into Israel and potentially targeted using GPS coordinates or using a camera mounted on the drone and driving it to its target location. But the world media will simply say that it is but a matter of time before Israel devises a means of intercepting the balloons, kites, and of course the drones. Of the three, the drones are the easiest to knock out of the air as the electronics inside are vulnerable to a directed EMP pulse while kites and balloons are a separate matter and a bit of a challenge.

 

When Israel hits Hamas with any accusation that they are breaking any agreement for quiet, they claim that the rockets fired were done by Islamic Jihad and they have been told to stand down and if they refuse, what can Hamas do to end their launching rockets if Islamic Jihad so desires. You know, free choice terrorist style. Sooner or later Hamas owned rocket launchers get itchy fingers and they begin to join in on the launching of rockets. At some point, the world has to recognize the Israeli right to protect her lands and peoples from these attacks. Even when the one fatality about a month ago was a Palestinian Arab staying illegally in a house in southern Israel and this was almost the only struck that day. Still, Israel suffers other forms of trauma from such attacks. The world has been led to believe that the Israeli Iron Dome systems prevents rockets from reaching their destination within populated areas, which is mostly a valid statement as it has intercepted successfully over 85% of rockets fired. That still leaves that other 15% which get through and strike within the heavily populated areas within Israel. Additionally, even when the rocket is intercepted and prevented from reaching the target and now prevented from detonating its war head, there is still a matter of large and substantive remains of the rocket and interceptor which will strike the ground with all the force gravity is able to impart to them. There are also people suffering from shock who require treatment and in rare instances shock victims can reach a point where their shock spurs a heart attack or convulsions along with other reactions to the explosions. Even when intercepted, the rocket and interceptor will cause an explosion of lesser levels than the rocket would make if it struck, but still loud enough to add to the fright. Until you have been under such attacks, one really cannot appreciate the level of adrenaline and other physical changes your body goes through reacting to a situation where your life is in real jeopardy and there is nothing you can do but pray. You reach a point where your helplessness overwhelms your ability to remain calm and from there it is but a short time before one succumbs to their panic. There have been times where the rockets continued one every hour to hour and a half for days. There have been multiple launches placing anywhere from fifty to two-hundred rockets into the air in a short few minutes to a quarter of an hour and occasionally more where it literally rains rockets. Add in the fear that your child might forget the warnings you instructed that morning and on their way home from school find one of the rigged balloons and becomes the next victim to Hamas terrorism. The border rioters were provided a new way for attacking the Zionist entity and its Jews by attaching explosive devices and poisoned sweets in a colorful bag to their balloons hoping that some innocent child picks up the package and it detonates or they eat the poisoned candies, worse still, share the newly found candy. When your child is a mere five minutes late coming home from school or play become the longest five minutes in their parents’ lives fearing the worst. This is normalcy for over a million Israelis and every so often a politicians, including Bibi, make the mistake of speaking the reality of this situation, that as long as they do not attack Tel Aviv and the surrounding region, then Israel can restrain militarily and it has been this lack of reaction which has driven the silence of the terror attacks daily thrown at Israel.

 

When might a war begin with Hamas and Islamic Jihad in Gaza? Providing Hamas is able to curtail attacks when Israel has reached a point where actions are being considered, then an open conflict is unlikely. Sooner or later, Israel will be forced to attack Gaza in response to the nearly constant attacks simply to bring the slowly escalating terror attacks to an end. The problem is that as long as any Israeli response only addresses the stocks of rockets and explosive or poisoned packets thus preventing bringing about temporary quiet. Bibi Netanyahu might order a heavy air attack response to the border terror and especially if these daily attacks start including rocket firing as well or simply as a sign of strength and caring about the border regions and the terrorism inflicted upon them shortly before the mid-September elections. This leads to there having been such increasing levels of violence which no national leader would permit against their own people without some form of retribution with the aim of ending these attacks. What one need remember when taking in news reports about events in Israel is that almost every one of these reports will open going into painful, possibly excruciatingly so, detail of every move taken by Israel with great emphasis on attacks using aircraft. Only deep into the report will the actions by Hamas and Islamic Jihad be mentioned and if one is very lucky, the report will actually finally speak of the fact that the Israeli attack was in response to the terrorist attacks upon Israel. Another one of the medias’ methods for placing Israel in the worst light possible, the media reporting will list numbers of casualties on both sides using Islamic Jihad and Hamas numbers for civilians injured and killed as a result of the war. What is left out is that the terrorists use methods and tactics which drastically increase the number of innocent civilians within Gaza placed in direct jeopardy hoping to get as many civilians listed as casualties while Israel has invested in bomb shelters and building stronger buildings able to withstand rockets and minimize the threat they will cause those within. The Gazan terrorists also will take one of their own terror troops who was killed in the fighting and take his weapons and ammunition off their fellow terrorist’s body and, presto, you now have an instant murdered civilian. It often takes weeks, though Israel has increased their efficiency. For Israeli sources to pour over the data from the Palestinian health authorities and check the names on the death certificates screening them for known terrorists and rectifying their erroneous intentional use to inflate the number of civilian deaths when they were actually a combatant. The way the two sides fight and treat their civilians is the reason for the lopsided toll on civilians. When sirens sound in Israel, the people simply head for the nearest shelter for protection while in Gaza, when there is going to be fighting the terror units place civilians to the fore to maximize their deaths, the terror government provides no shelters and does not require new building to have built in shelters on every floor, if not every single unit and finally the terrorists instruct the medical personnel to count every death as the death of an innocent and seldom as what it actually is, the death of a terrorist.

 

The media simply regurgitates every lie they are fed by the terrorist leadership placing Israel in the worst possible light and then editorialize about how Israel is a mass slaughterer of innocents ignoring all facts such as the true count which takes about a week or so after the end of fighting to fully vet the facts from the lies. But there is little chance for a ground assault into Gaza at this time but can never be completely ruled out as Hamas and Islamic Jihad could begin tomorrow morning firing fifty rockets or mortars per hour and double the rate every few days and soon Israel has to do whatever is required to bring the terror barrages to a strict and complete end, and that is a ground offensive in order to protect lives. Yes, a ground offensive saves lives of Gazans while placing the soldiers of the IDF facing far greater hazards to their lives. There exists a far easier means of ending the violence in Gaza by bombing every suspected location where rockets, warheads, explosives and other tools of the terror trade are stored. Such bombing raids would be required to bomb most of the school buildings, numerous Mosques, health clinics, homes, apartments, and the areas used for weapons manufacture. The reality is that in order to rid Gaza of the weapons, explosives, rockets and other terror tools would require a virtually every building within the regions where the poor and less well-off reside and where most of the damaged and destroyed apartment buildings are found which their government, the terrorist leaders, have decided not to rebuild after each conflict such that they can point to the previous damage claiming it is brand new damage from the most recent conflict. In some way that is true as it has been a continuous battle to contain the terrorism keeping it from spreading its caustic hold which attempts to destroy all it touches. An example of the slanted reporting is shown as when Israel cleared a small section of land along the southern Gaza border pre-2005, the media made a great debacle out of the whole affair yet when Egypt cleared five to ten times the area (see image below) the media completely ignored their actions.

 

Egyptian Forces Destroy Rafah Homes on Border with Gaza October 2014 (photo credit: REUTERS)

Egyptian Forces Destroy Rafah Homes on Border with Gaza October 2014
(photo credit: REUTERS)

 

The surreal threat comes from Hezballah in Lebanon and their stockpile of tens upon tens of thousands of rockets and with more still being manufactured as well as missiles provided by Iran. A coordinated upgrading of the larger of the Hezballah rockets has been instigated by Iran who is providing Hezballah with guidance packages which can be fit into their warheads or their rockets transforming them into targetable missiles. This makes each rocket turned missile worth ten or more plain rockets as it would take that many rockets to make certain you struck your intended target. Hezballah is closer to the definition of a military as they have received generous training and arming by Iran through the IRGC. As Iran has forces in Syria in addition to the IRGC forces which have been fighting in Syria in support of Bashir al-Assad using both to provide arms and provisions for Hezballah which is also assisting the fight in Syria as well as supporting the Houthis in Yemen who are also armed and trained by Iran. Iran would arm Hamas and Islamic Jihad to a level comparable to Hezballah if it were not for the fact that Israel prevents such from the sea while Israel and Egypt assist one another in preventing such over land provisions for the terrorists in Gaza. Egypt has been angered by attacks in the Sinai Peninsula which have been aided and supported by Hamas and Islamic Jihad against Egyptian forces and personnel. As far as when the coming war with Hezballah, this war will apparently not be initiated by Israel without a provocation traceable to Hezballah, and even then, any Israeli response would be measured. Israelis really wish to live in peace without threats hanging over our heads or over our borders. Currently, there exists Iranian interlocuters at both the northern and southern borders and Iran has been making overtures to Mahmoud Abbas as well as some of the other leadership including some of his rivals. Iran looks at the regions controlled by the Palestinian Authority and its terrorist entity of the PLO and the al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigade, such that Iran will have Israel almost surrounded. Any war in the north will be the result of attacks from within Lebanon and not starting from within Israel. In many ways this could prove to be a disaster. Israel is fully aware of the locations for all of the Hezballah rocket and missile storage sites, their weapons depots, most of the bunkers and their interconnecting tunnel system. Israel knows where each rocket launcher exists including the one under the al-Shifa Hospital in Gaza City.

 

The presumed intimidation Iran believes their ability to command the terror forces against Israel is producing is, in all reality, simply nonexistent. One would think that Israelis were walking around shaking in their boots fearing that their next step could easily be their last. Such an assessment is ludicrous as Israel remains just outside the top ten happiest nations coming in at a respectable eleventh, well ahead to the United States which is ranked seventeenth. Iran also has designs on Jordan, Saudi Arabia and the gulf states. This is the reason that Iran is allied with the Houthis in Yemen, so as to attain a southern front against Saudi Arabia and control of a maritime choke-point the Bab-el-Mandeb at the southernmost end of the Red Sea and a point that should Iran close down this waterway they would basically be closing off the Suez Canal isolating Europe from Asia. Such a blockade would be against maritime codes and make Iran a pariah amongst the nations. Iran could go do far more by closing the Strait of Hormuz allowing only their own oil to be passed through and to the rest of the world. As far as Israel is concerned, Iran poses a far greater threat than any other nation. This is amplified by their ongoing threats to destroy the Jewish State in the first half of this century. As they hold ultimate control over the actions of Hezballah, Islamic Jihad, Hamas and IRGC units in Syria and potentially out of the Sinai Peninsula where they may have organized other terror groups who use that region for supply and training. This would leave Israel with only their border with Jordan being free from attack. Iran might even go as far as using the IRGC to remove Mahmoud Abbas and their taking control of the regions in Judea and Samaria under Palestinian Authority control. That would all but encircle Israel. The only thing which could make this worse would be for an Iranian naval task force to also attack from the Mediterranean Sea forcing a naval battle with the Israeli naval units which protect that region.

 

Iran is currently conducting wars in Syria backing Bashir al-Assad, Iraq where they have decimated the Sunni population and are also driving the Kurds out squeezing them between the Iraqi and Iranian forces and Turkey sweeping in across northern Syria, Yemen where they are supporting the revolution against the elected government using the Houthis and IRGC forces, in Lebanon through Hezballah Iran can take control there at their leisure, and surrounding Israel and Saudi Arabia while threatening Jordan; yet, they have the nerve to claim Israel is attempting to conquer the region. Iran is the threatening hegemonic power in the region but they know they can always distract the United Nations, European nations, European Union, the various human rights NGOs and numerous other political entities by screaming that Israel is doing ethnic cleansing or conducting genocide or is an Apartheid regime or any of any number of tropes used against the Jewish State here in the not so civilized era and divert all attention from themselves. The current exception to this rule is President Trump. This does not mean that the Republicans are all that enthused with Israel or that the Democrats have much nice to say or think about Israel, but it does point out that the vast majority of Americans still support Israel. The problem in the United States is that the Democrat Party has adopted a new outlook for the future which does not include Israel or even necessarily the Jews. Still, the vast majority of Jews support the Democrat Party through thick and thin, and it is getting thinner every day but the leftist Jews simply refuse to see. Iran will start the next large conflagration and it will start in the waters around Iran and the Arabian Peninsula. Where their initial target will be the United States naval fleets, they will attack Israel if by no other means than using Hamas, Islamic Jihad and Hezballah and whomever else they can find including the IRGC in Syria and elsewhere. Once Israel has neutralized Hezballah in Lebanon and retaken the Gaza forcing Hamas and Islamic Jihad into the Sinai where Egypt will deal with them at the first sign of trouble, then as far as Israel is directly concerned, this conflict will have ended. Certainly, Iran could launch ballistic missiles at Israel potentially even having nuclear warheads. The Israeli layered anti-missile defense augmented by the American units manning the THADD systems should prove to be an effective blocking force against any Iranian ballistic missiles. The main hope is once Iran has forced a war in the Middle East upon the world that the United States and her allies will make a very quick and resolute end to the problems caused by Iran and then turn the country over to the people and allow them to elect new leadership within three or four months and then the United States should simply leave a small detachment behind and otherwise go home. Removing the current Iranian leadership would allow the entirety of the Middle East to at least catch its breathe before any new problems arise.

 

Beyond the Cusp

 

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